Tag Archive: artichoke


I spent much of the morning today thinking about artichokes. Working on my forthcoming zine, Oyster Lexicon.

In case I haven’t already described it (my understanding of this project has evolved over time, so I might have written about it before in a less specific way) Oyster Lexicon will be an alphabet of me (aka Lainie the Oyster) and A is for Artichoke. I have an artichoke drawing, a recipe, and artichoke mix…originally I thought I would just do 6 letters of the alphabet per issue, but it’s starting to seem like I might be doing 1-3 letters per issue, what with all of the artichoke media I’m going to gather. The zine will also be fully or partially full-color. I’m still debating about the size format. It will be hand-lettered (no computers will be used in the creation of the pages, but I will be scanning the hand-drawn/hand-lettered pages to do the layout and MIGHT do some computer editing after that.)

I’m super excited about doing a zine again. I had started to do one years ago after a trip to Chicago, but never really sustained an interest in it (though I do still have some great pieces that I was going to include in that zine that I might use for my “C is for Chicago” pages of Oyster Lexicon.) My plan is to put out the zine, as well as postcards and maybe notecards with the illustrations I’m making for each letter. I’d love to encourage people to send out actual mail, so I feel like making things that other people can use to brighten up the mailboxes of friends and relationships will accomplish another goal.

It’s been a long time since I last put out a zine, so I’m not entirely sure how I will do distribution. Ideally, I will be able to get some advanced orders to help fund the printing and mailing of the initial print run, which will hopefully continue to (mostly) fund any additional print runs. It’s not like I work at Kinko’s and can get free copies anymore. Speaking of which – do I still know people who work at Kinko’s and can get me a deal on copies? 😉

Etsy? WePay? Amazon books? iBooks? How are people promoting/distributing zines these days? If anyone reading this can give me any advice/suggestions, I’d really appreciate it.

In other news –

My new rhythm of days is working really well for me. I feel like I’ve achieved a pretty decent balance of internal/external time, and I’m making time for art and education as well as day-to-day practical things. I’m a little less worried about completing everything on my list, and am working on finding chunks of my week where I can just forget about time completely and focus on a task until *I* feel done with it, rather than when a clock tells me it’s time to be done with it. I still need to work on eliminating distractions and focusing on the task at hand (as evidenced by the fact that I got caught up in several facebook discussions during the writing of this blog post.) but I do feel like I’m spending the time I have doing things that are important to me, or essential to my family and community.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about dating, and how people without children maybe don’t really grasp the challenges in the lives of single parents – particularly custodial parents. Primarily, it’s odd to me how even very kind and understanding people can misunderstand how much of a financial and logistical burden it is to be the custodial parent of children – even when those children are older and not in need of constant supervision. As a woman and a feminist, for instance, I’m not really keen on a guy always picking up the tab for me. As a single mother who is struggling financially, however, you are damn straight I can’t even afford dating unless the other person pays. I’m totally cool with non-extravagant dating. I’m especially cool with cooking in or creating our own DIY entertainment…but it’s really difficult for me to help people understand that my inability to pay for a date is not a “reverse sexist” thing, but a “financial necessity” thing…and if I was the person in the relationship in a better financial situation, I would definitely be the person who offered to pay, or I would adjust my expectations of what a date might entail to ensure affordability. It’s a tricky subject, and it makes me want to avoid dating rather than having to attempt to unpack it with someone. hahaha.

Also, my children are not baggage. It might be challenging to date a woman with children, but it is hopefully a net positive. Oddly enough, I feel like my children become more of a challenge to my dating relationships as they get older. When they were younger, they tended to be more agreeable and open-minded about accepting people into our lives. Now they are more set in their ways and can be resistant to inviting new people in, even temporarily. I’m sure it’s difficult for a man to come into my home and be shunned by my adolescent boys, but that is the way adolescents sometimes are. It might be more exaggerated in my household because I am not a strict authoritarian, and my boys have always been very free to express themselves (for better or for worse) – but it’s the way it is. It’s really up to the adults in the relationship to navigate these issues…and I seem to find men who want instant acceptance from people who just aren’t designed to be uncritical of new people in their lives. It takes time. It takes time. It takes time. And the last thing I need is to be this person who is trying to solely balance the needs of the children with the needs of a potential new partner. Guess whose needs are going to come first every time, guys? You got it – the non-adults! The ones who I am obligated to care for until they are able to care for themselves. Which, by the way,  might not be the very day they turn 18. It could possibly take longer than that. Because all kids mature differently.

I suppose dating as a single parent of adolescent boys is a good filter for me, though. It’s a lot more difficult to get involved in relationships and situations that are overly-complicated and require more of me than I should be expected to reasonably give. I’m just not capable of accommodating another person’s needs above mine or my children’s right now. It’s challenging for me, because my tendency is to accommodate. My tendency is to invite chaos. My tendency is to try new and different things, experiment, and see where they end up. And while I might be giving up on some things that might, after some work, end up being beneficial…I just can’t spare the time and energy to get there at this point in my life. I require a partner who is able to give more than take right now. I require a partner who accommodates me, more than requiring me to accommodate him. That FEELS selfish to me, but it’s reality. It’s where I am. And, really? I’m fucking worth it! hahahaha.

 

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She’s Not There.

It’s 11 PM, and I’m waiting for an artichoke to cook. Finally getting around to eating dinner. Today has continued the theme of wishing I could remain bedridden while still accomplishing all of my goals and tasks. I did manage to stay in my cozy bed for much of the day, but some things required out-of-bedness. For instance, chalk pastels in bed? Not such a great idea.

Mainly I lazed about in my nightgown today. Brooded a little. Thought a lot. Drew and wrote some. Listened to music. Chatted with an old friend and kept track of world events. It was definitely a well-executed mental health day.

I thought a lot about understanding vs. accommodating. And the fact that I can very much understand someone else’s choices. I might even endorse those choices. I might possibly even fight for that person’s right to make those choices. However, understanding fully why someone has made the choices they have made does not necessarily obligate me to make the same choices, or to invite the potential consequences of those choices into my daily life. That’s been a difficult lesson for me to learn, but it’s a good one. I’m glad to have learned that this week. I’m glad to have come to terms with it. Understanding is not agreement. And just because I don’t desire something does not mean I don’t understand it.

Anyway, my artichoke is almost done. Nom nom. Eats!

 

 

I’ve been sneezing all day & now in the dwindling hours I’m left feeling groggy and uninspired. So, I’m just going to post some links and be done with it…

 

Andalusia’s history is peppered with occupations of latifundias – huge agricultural estates dating back to Roman times – by landless workers. Mr Sánchez Gordillo claims these estates make up about 50 per cent of the region’s land, but are owned by just 2 per cent of Andalusia’s population. He says Andalusia is also covered, now, with dozens of empty industrial estates that are mute testimony to the unemployment that blights the region – one sits just 12 miles away from Marinaleda, where the only visible “green shoots” belonged to weeds flourishing amid the patchwork of rusting streetlights, crumbling service roads and pedestrian crossings leading nowhere.“It is true we form part of a tradition, but we’re doing something new here too: we’re insisting that natural resources should be at the service of people, that they have a natural right to the land, and that land is not something to be marketed,” says Mr Sánchez  Gordillo. “Food should not be speculated with either. It is a basic human right. We also believe in the [common] sovereignty of [food] as a way of profoundly changing agriculture in the world, not just one particular place.”http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/27-of-spaniards-are-out-of-work-yet-in-one-town-everyone-has-a-job-8612920.html

 

Art for Advocacy – 13 posters for sustainable social change: http://www.treehugger.com/slideshows/culture/graphic-advocacy-posters-digital-age/?utm_source=feedly

 

“The New York Times said: The U.S. Department of Justice secretly seized two months of phone records for reporters and editors of The Associated Press in what the news organization said Monday was a “serious interference with A.P.’s constitutional rights to gather and report the news.”” http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/14/us/phone-records-of-journalists-of-the-associated-press-seized-by-us.html?pagewanted=all

 

Monsanto’s practices both in the courtroom and on the farm have made the company increasingly the target of criticism in recent months, and a series of affairs in Washington has done little to weaken the opposition. Campaigns against the company have been renewed as of late following the passing of a congressional agriculture spending bill that included a provision — dubbed the “Monsanto Protection Act” by its critics — that provides legal immunity to biotech entities that experiment with genetically modified and genetically engineer foods. Additionally, the relationship between Monsanto and the country’s high court has been called into question since one of the justices, Clarence Thomas, formerly served as a lawyer for the St. Louis-based company.

On May 25, an international series of rallies to protest Monsanto is scheduled to occur with demonstrations planned on six continents. http://rt.com/usa/patented-monsanto-court-patent-210/

Speaking of which:

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“For many, many generations, women and children were told: don’t let yourself get raped, and if you do, for god’s sake don’t whinge about it. Don’t act like a slut. Don’t let your guard down. Don’t ever assume for a second that you have the same right as a man to exist in public or private space without fear of assault and humiliation. That message is slowly, finally, starting to change, so that instead, we’re telling men and boys: do not rape. Do not grope, assault, bully or hurt women, children or anyone over whom you have temporary power. Doing so will no longer increase your social status. If you do it anyway, you will find yourself publicly shamed and possibly up on criminal charges. This is the age of the internet, and nobody forgets.

Confronting structural violence is intensely painful. It’s like squeezing out an enormous splinter you hadn’t realised was there. The pain comes, in large part, from the understanding that you yourself might be implicated by virtue of easy ignorance; that you yourself might have stood by while evil went on; that people you know and trust and respect might very well have done terrible things simply because they thought they were allowed to. Questioning the morality of slave-owning was, until comparatively recently in human history, a minority position. It would be crass and simplistic to equate rape culture with slavery even if there weren’t complex historical links between the two. There is one important similarity, however, and that’s in the reaction when dominant, oppressive cultures finally wake up to the idea that evil on an immense scale has been taking place right in front of them.”

http://www.newstatesman.com/broadcast/2013/05/not-persecution-old-men-prosecution-rapists-and-we-should-applaud-it

 

Asparagus Pesto: http://www.yumsugar.com/Asparagus-Pesto-Recipe-30388639?utm_source=feedly

 

“Take a step back for a moment. Letting children have their own way? Doing just what they like? Wouldn’t that be a total disaster? Yes, if parents perform only the first half of the trick. In the cultural lexicon of modernity, self-will is often banally understood as brattish, selfish behaviour. Will does not mean selfishness, however, and autonomy over oneself is not a synonym for nastiness towards others – quite the reverse. Ngarinyin children in Australia traditionally grew up uncommanded and uncoerced, but from a young age they learned socialisation. That is the second half of the trick. Children are socialised into awareness and respect for the will and autonomy of others, so that, when necessary as they grow, they will learn to hold their own will in check in order to maintain good relations. For a community to function well, an individual may on occasion need to rein in his or her own will but, crucially, not be compelled to do so by someone else.

Among Inuit and Sami people, there is an explicit need for children to learn self-regulation. Adults keep a reticent and tactful distance. A child “is learning on his own” is a common Sami expression. Sami children are trained to control anger, sensitivity, aggression and shame. Inuit people stress that children must learn self-control – with careful emphasis. The child should not be controlled by another, with their will overruled, but needs to learn to steer herself or himself.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2013/may/04/leave-them-kids-alone-griffiths

 

Had a difficult time picking just one quote for this one, guys. This distresses me immensely. It’s like this: if we don’t start fighting back against these corporations in earnest, they will continue to treat us all as though we owe our souls to their company store:

“Exxon says it lets evacuated homeowners briefly visit their homes whenever they want. Thursday they decided that wouldn’t be the case.Shortly after stepping onto Senia’s property, we were both told to leave immediately by an unidentified Exxon official who said it was blocked off because of construction.”What I don’t understand is that we’re told that we have the right to be here as property owners,” said Senia. “We’re not in the way, we’re not bothering other people and sometimes they just kick us out.”Meanwhile, countless people from Exxon and other agencies go in and out of his home.”It’s very distressing,” said Senia. “Sometimes it feels like there’s an invading army just in your house.””http://www.katv.com/story/22212987/mayflower-homeowner-kicked-off-of-property-by-exxon

 

Artichoke Asiago Cheese Bread: http://kitchen-parade-veggieventure.blogspot.com/2013/04/artichoke-asiago-cheese-bread.html?utm_source=feedly&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+AVeggieVenture+(A+Veggie+Venture)